Aurora University has been picked to win the Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference softball championship according to the preseason poll. The Spartans captured their fourth consecutive regular-season title last year with a perfect 19-3 record in conference play (26-17 overall) before being upset by Benedictine University in the NACC Tournament. Aurora received 13 of the 24 first-place votes and 277 total points in the preseason poll for the top billing.
Benedictine was right behind in second with 272 points and the final 11 top votes while Dominican University was third with 227.
Concordia University Wisconsin was fourth with 222, Lakeland University fifth with 180 and Concordia University Chicago sixth with 176 poll points.
Marian University came in seventh with 133, Wisconsin Lutheran College eighth with 125 and Alverno College ninth with 84.
Milwaukee School of Engineering (76), Edgewood College (73) and Rockford University (27) rounded out the poll.
The NACC’s regular season standings determine the teams that qualify for the six-team conference tournament, while the tournament champion receives the league’s automatic bid to the NCAA III Championship Tournament.
2017 NACC Preseason Poll
1. Aurora (13), 277
2. Benedictine (11), 272
3. Dominican, 227
4. Concordia Wisconsin, 222
5. Lakeland, 180
6. Concordia Chicago, 176
7. Marian, 133
8. Wisconsin Lutheran, 125
9. Alverno, 84
10. MSOE, 76
11. Edgewood, 73
12. Rockford, 27
First-place votes in parentheses
Voted by the conference’s head coaches and sports information directors 12-11-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 point scale used
Marian University was founded in 1936 by the Congregation of Sisters of St. Agnes in Fond du Lac, Wis. The institution has one of the lowest student-faculty ratios in the state and strives to live its core values as a community committed to learning, dedicated to service and social justice and joined together by spiritual traditions. Marian offers undergraduate, adult, master’s and doctoral degree programs at its main campus and in facilities throughout Wisconsin.